hello erin »

Considering I started round 3 it’s probably time to recap round 2. I mean there’s only six rounds- if I can recap 12 months of my children’s first years of life I can surely manage six chemo recaps?

I was nervous going in for this round. Just the unexpected and honestly having them access my port for the first time freaked me the F out (turns out freezing spray and amazing nurses made that go smoothly). Day 1 I was in the office for 6 hours. Days 2-4 I only had to pop in for a zofran drip and to get a bag change for my sweet messenger bag. And day 5 I was there for 2 hours.

And those were the only times I left the house.

This round was harder during the actual round. I was way more nauseous. I would get this crazy steroid high on Monday & Tuesday morning but by the afternoon was worthless on the couch (it doesn’t help that chemo insomnia has me waking up at 330 most mornings… and the peeing every few hours because they’re pumping so much liquid into me). And by Wednesday I was a shell of a person just taking naps and trying to binge watch hart of Dixie on Netflix.

But the recovery seemed faster. On friday evening when i broke free of my chemo pack I was SO EXCITED. It was k’s birthday- I wasn’t on chemo anymore. I was chugging Gatorade (2 quarts is a LOT of Gatorade), I was allowed to shower for the first time in 4 days!

I left the office with a neulasta patch. It’s a motorized patch that delivers my bone marrow boost 26 hours after my last round of chemo. That adminstired itself on Saturday night. That’s when my bone pain set in. I’d say that the bone pain is one of my worst side effects. Clothing touching my body feels like daggers. I want to wrap myself in a heating pad (i.e. Electric blanket? I should look into that). Come to find out my bone marrow is a freaking rockstar. It shoots my white blood cells to levels 6x of a normal person and never drops much lower than the low side of average. My doctor was absolutely giddy upon seeing my levels sky rocket- then drop- then bounce above normal again. It also means with my levels not dropping too low I get a 20% up in chemo dosage each time. So by round 6 I’ll be getting double what I got round one (if my maths correct. That’s honesrly the first time I’ve done that math before and it’s horrifying).

My mouth sores weren’t as bad- the bone pain was excruciating but manageable. And the nausea drifted away. By Wednesday of week 2 I was working out! I fit in FIVE workouts between Wednesday and Sunday. We had dinner with friends. I felt like a normal person (a bald one. But a normal one!).

Speaking of being bald.

I’m letting my bald flag fly. I can’t do hats anymore. They’re hot and itchy and the girls hate them. And as soon as I realized I was wearing them to make other people feel better about ME being sick I said – f it! I’ll tan my melon and rock it. People have been SO SWEET. Strangers come up and compliment me on my fantastic head shape (thanks mom & dad for letting me be a stomach sleeper when I was an infant). It also helps that I now look JUST like my favorite rapper pitbull.

In other news I had a PET scan to check on bertha’s progress. And I’m SO happy to report she’s shrinking. And shrinking quickly! I was hoping I’d go in and it would be all “your cancer free! Let’s cancel those last 3 rounds!” But turns out it doesn’t work like that anyplace besides my dreams.

So there’s round 2 and the aftermath of round 2 in a nutshell.

my hair started getting SO patchy. so i made mike take duct tape to it.

and then i made him shave it to finish it off. for better or worse people!

once it was gone and tanned it felt SO much better!

my friend leslie was determined to help me cope with the bald in public. so she assigned me homework and made me text her selfies out and about bald. at the doctors, at target, at a basketball game. . .

one of my first pilates classes back. i think was sore for dayyyys.

i can’t explain it. . .but i now feel the need to dress like pitbull. with my cool edge haircut.

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  • February 21, 2017 - 8:43 am

    Lynn Richey - You are a rockstar! Amazing! ❤️

  • February 21, 2017 - 9:21 am

    julie - You are beyond amazing. I mean, there are no words to describe how awesome you are. I have tears in my eyes! I bet everyone reading this not only is cheering you on, but also thinking MY GOODNESS she is gorgeous and positive and upbeat and funny and perfect! Seriously, we need to get you on Ellen or something. Dang girl!

  • February 21, 2017 - 6:54 pm

    Gayle - I’m so impressed by you. You don’t let anything keep you sidelined! What an inspiring and beautiful person you are! Thank you for sharing and teaching us all how to live life large!!!

  • February 21, 2017 - 10:03 pm

    Linda Zarbock - I get excited each time your mom posts your update. I think Lynn Richey said it best: you are a Rock Star and a beautiful one at that !!

  • February 21, 2017 - 11:34 pm

    Tobey Leier - Everytime I read your update I admire you so much Erin!! Your honesty, positive attitude and your continued sense of humor is amazing as you take this journey to kick Bertha’s Ass!! … you are truly one beautiful strong woman!! And yes.. now you do have an uncanny resemblance to Pitbull… but wasaaayy cuter!! Sending more love and hugs your way ❤

  • February 22, 2017 - 8:03 am

    Desiree - God. I love you. Just when I think you’re the strongest person I know you give an update, shoot a text, and you’re simply rocking it all, and so damn gracefully. Stronger than strong.
    You amaze me daily. And, I’m crying right now. So. Thanks for that. 😉

  • February 22, 2017 - 12:32 pm

    Erinn Connolly - Sending love and some sideline cheers to you. Amazed by your strength and attitude!

  • February 22, 2017 - 11:41 pm

    Lauren - You are AMAZING! Love pit bull and you rock that look girl! You are an inspiration! I want to send you something would you mind sending me your address?

  • February 23, 2017 - 5:08 am

    Natalie - You are a rockstar!! I’m so happy to hear bertha is shrinking- such good news. I just love they way you’re handling this, it’s such an inspiration, and I don’t even mean that in a cliche way it truly is!!

  • February 23, 2017 - 5:12 pm

    Liz - Girl, you know how I feel about you. You are seriously a rockstar. My hero. And I love your friend Leslie for her little challenge! Seriously so sweet of her. Is she the one who brought you all that ice cream today? Because if she is, I know how good that ice cream is and I really am coming over! LOL.
    But in all seriousness, you are kicking Bertha’s a$$. You have such a positive outlook on everything and have kept your humor through this whole thing which I know is helping you immensely in your recovery. You are one gorgeous bald lady, Mrs. Worldwide! I love you! xo

  • December 11, 2017 - 3:40 am

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my doctor warned me i wouldnt be starting the second round of chemo with hair (which i promise is a good thing because i’m also not allowed to shower for 5 days). but still i dont think anything can fully prepare you for the day you start pulling out clumps in the shower.

it started on monday coming out in really small doses. but by tuesday i knew it was GAME OVER. i stood in the shower pulling out clumps of hair and knew i wouldn’t last one more day mentally.

not everyone gets to shave their head on their birthday.

i knew i had my head wrapped around the situation but i wasn’t sure how the girls would take it. i knew i needed to involve lex in the process as much as possible to soften the blow. so mike did the majority of the work- but lex got to have a turn with the clippers too. it turned it into a game instead of being some huge horrible emotional thing for her (and me!).

i won’t lie. i cried the first time i saw myself. i think the hardest part is that i now LOOK sick. it was something that was easy to hide. it was easy to pretend everything was normal on the outside- and now? well now i totally look like a cancer patient (or GI jane until the rest of it falls out). the girls handled it SO WELL. lex won’t even let me wear a hat at home because she thinks THATS sillier than my new hair cut (hats are itchy anyways).

so now its gone. just in time for round 2!

mike saved my hair in a bag (fear not. i tossed it).

i prefer to think i just look “cold” instead of sick. . .

during my first “public appearance”& birthday dinner sans hair one of my bff’s showed up with a head scarf on to soften the blow. that girl is a KEEPER.

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  • January 26, 2017 - 1:56 pm

    Heidi - You look BEAUTIFUL!!! You always have that beautiful smile. You ARE SO STRONG. You hide it well. Always thinking of you. Hugs and Kisses Heidi and Gordon.

  • January 26, 2017 - 3:09 pm

    Michele - You are gorgeous! Your smile lights up your entire face…and stating the obvs, your head is shaped nicely. Huge plus! You don’t look sick, you look like a fighter!! Fight on, girlfriend. You’ve got this!

  • January 26, 2017 - 3:22 pm

    Gayle - Erin,
    You may think you look sick, but you truly look beautiful. Keep writing and smiling…your beauty spills over and is very inspiring on so many levels❤️ Happy Birthday, my sweet friend!!!

  • January 26, 2017 - 3:45 pm

    Liz - You don’t look sick… you look STRONG! You are one of the strongest people I know. You are truly my hero. I love you so much and think you look BEAUTIFUL!
    I love that you involved Lex and I love that she won’t let you wear a hat at home. Mike and your girls are truly amazing and I am SO happy you get to be home with them this next round!

  • January 26, 2017 - 3:55 pm

    Laura - You are one fierce and amazing mama!

  • January 26, 2017 - 5:04 pm

    Jessica - Erin, you look amazing! Involving the girls the way you have and having the strength to see the positive in all of this is inspiring and you should be proud. I can tell that your girls are. You are being such an amazing role model for them. They are lucky you are their mom.

  • January 26, 2017 - 6:55 pm

    Sarah S. - You are just so beautiful inside and out! I, for one, know I wouldn’t look that good without hair so props to you for rocking it! And as always, your humor is the best!

  • January 26, 2017 - 7:43 pm

    Courtney - You look beautiful! And really in that hat you don’t look sick..just cold as you say.

  • January 27, 2017 - 4:18 am

    Meghan - What an amazing mom to make sure that something that is hard for you, easier for your girls! And honestly, you really do rock the bald head! Just own it and no one will assume you are sick, cause it really does look awesome on you! And what an amazing friend to wear a head scarf to dinner! I knew a woman who was going through chemo and when she shaved her head her husband and 5 kids (all over 10) shaved their heads too. I was always impressed 3 of her daughters did it too!

  • January 27, 2017 - 5:05 am

    B - You are such an awesome mommy, and so brave! You rock that shaved head! and your friend, she is a keeper.

  • January 27, 2017 - 8:24 am

    Erinn Connolly - So amazed by you, and of course these pics make look losing your fun and beautiful. You really are gorgeous with or without hair. And your friend wins for most supportive, how thoughtful and sweet for that to even cross her mind. Love that Bertha isn’t keeping you down.

  • January 27, 2017 - 9:51 am

    Laura Keenan - You are one bad ass GI Jane. And you have one of thee best friends to wear a head scarf with you! So so sweet! And i’m so happy to see you tossing some champs back… because that would be a travesty if you had to go without. Hope your birthday was as special as could be. Will be thinking about you lots as you head into Round 2.

  • January 27, 2017 - 9:55 am

    Jessica Beer - You are beautiful and amazing and I’m so proud of you for involving Lex in the process! Love you mama!

  • January 27, 2017 - 9:56 am

    Bon - Looking good there, Erin. You really don’t need a head scarf – with your face and beautiful smile, you can still brighten up the rooms you are in. Nice that you made Lex a big part of it as well. Think of you often and sending good thoughts your way. Hugs.

  • January 27, 2017 - 11:14 am

    Jess - You are such a strong person, even if you don’t feel it! To think of your girls during this time is simply amazing. I love that you are tackling this and sharing it with everyone. I hope it is helpful. And you do look hot, so don’t even fret about that!! Kick ass, girl. Thinking of you always!

  • January 27, 2017 - 10:20 pm

    Mollyp - I know you think you look sick now, but I can’t stop staring at how absolutely gorgeous you look. Your eyes sparkle. Your smile shows your sassy side. You are rocking it girl! #kba. Kick berthas ass!

  • January 28, 2017 - 5:41 am

    Brooke - You are truly so beautiful! I saw your insta story with your girls and I have always admired how beautiful and well styled your photos were… you could not look prettier with your hair as it is!! I am praying right now that you would feel so strong from something greater than yourself in your very weakest moments.

  • January 28, 2017 - 2:01 pm

    Sara - I can’t tell you how glad I am that you are surrounded by the most amazing friends since I can’t be there. And I just think you’re beautiful with or without hair. Love you so much.

  • January 29, 2017 - 6:47 am

    Joseph Gray - God’s strength is made great in our weakness. Bless you. And Peace be with you.

  • January 29, 2017 - 9:01 pm

    Desiree - Hair or not, you are beautiful.
    And, though I’ve said it a million times before, your strength through all of this is so freaking inspiring.

  • February 2, 2017 - 9:05 am

    Crystal - You are beautiful with or without hair! And you are so dang strong. Your positive attitude throughout it all is such an inspiration. Also, what a great friend that is! Wow. Just wow!

  • February 10, 2017 - 10:07 am

    Lauren - You go girl! Kick cancers ass!!

round one IN DA BOOKS.

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round one was interesting. I had exactly zero idea what to expect and i don’t necessarily love the unexpected.

we checked into the hospital bright n early on Monday morning- ready and raring to go. My fantastic doctor met us there- and i got to see the beautiful room I’d be spending the next five days of my life in.

I was just happy it had its own shower (not that I got to use it more than twice). Even though the hospital blocked access to Netflix (the NERVE).

So it came time for the nurse to get me all hooked up- i was so excited to use my fancy port for the first time. And she took one look at my port and decided it looked a little red (probably because I was a whopping 3 days post op). She was worried if she accessed the port and it was infected she’d send an infection straight into my blood stream- which is no bueno. So down to radiology I went to get a PICC line. Those warm and friendly people recognized me the second my gurney was wheeled down– as much as I love being on a first name basis with radiology I hope to not see them again until they rip my port out.

after my PICC line was in it was time to start the chemo. Which was really anticlimactic guys. I was expecting this big old BANG! YOURE DOING CHEMO with streamers and balloons! and dancers chanting “bon voyage bertha!”. But there was none of that. Just this orange stuff being pumped into my body.

Chemo is weird. It feels like the steroids and chemo drugs were battling in my head. Uppers and downers. It was impossible to concentrate, impossible to sit still, and day two brought the ever famous nausea. Nausea and being exhausted and feeling loopy. The five days blurred into one another big time (especially since they wouldn’t let me off the floor. I probably circled the floor 400 times). Its so weird, i can’t concentrate enough to read a book- or write out a coherent email. i’m not even sure this post will make any sense.

Day five I finished up three of my drugs and had two infusions left. One was easy peasy. The rituxan however is a literal beast. They have two nurses sit with you the entire time waiting for an allergic reaction to come. It was a party (I heart the nursing staff at torrance memorial like crazy) until my allergic reaction hit. It felt like my nut allergy- tongue & airway swelling. And they don’t mess around with airway swelling- so I was hit with an extreme amount of Benadryl.

It was lights out erin.

I’m writing this- so obviously you know there’s a happy ending coming your way. The Benadryl did its magic and I was allowed to head for home the second my last infusion was finished. Which was the highlight of my week (besides being unhooked long enough to shower twice).

Home has been absolutely amazing. Being around mike and the girls it’s just good for my soul.

I’m handling the emotional side of the medial stuff fairly well (i think?), but the kindness side of it makes me tear up every damn time. The cards, the flowers, the group of bloggers who got together to send me the most amazing gifts ever, the visitors, the meals, the social media comments, the thoughts & prayers. . . i could go on and on about how NICE everyone is. i don’t know what i did to deserve all of this- or how i’ll ever truly be able to thank everyone. but it means the WORLD to me (to us!). i so badly want to write everyone a personalized thank you and just let them know how grateful we are- but i can’t figure out how or when– but i’m trying. words just can’t express the thankful feelings we’re feeling. We have all this amazing support and I’m trying so hard not to count down the days until the madness begins again.


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a highlight of the week was when k showed up wearing her overalls on backwards. . .


i wasn’t allowed out of my room without one of these damn masks on.

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  • January 16, 2017 - 3:59 pm

    Sara - We are officially one round down and one round closer to ADVENTURES…. so WAY TO GO. Love you so much. I’m so proud of you!! Remind me to tell you about the time I got sent home from school for wearing a Millertime shirt because dad was in charge of wardrobe…

  • January 16, 2017 - 4:03 pm

    Meghan - 1 round down… woohoo! So glad you are home with your family! And I’m so glad you have such an amazing support system. I think I can speak for everyone and say no thank you note is necessary… just get better :).

  • January 16, 2017 - 4:15 pm

    Courtney Patterson - Round one down and guess what – you did it! You are amazing; a ferocious, kick-ass warrior. Thinking of you and sending lots of love and prayers your way.

  • January 16, 2017 - 5:13 pm

    Stef Harris - Erin, you’re an inspiration to us all. Your attitude towards everything is incredible and I can only imagine how seeing your girls and Mike brighten your day. Thinking of you often and sending lots of love. xoxo

  • January 16, 2017 - 5:29 pm

    Lacey Bean - Go YOU!!!

  • January 16, 2017 - 5:32 pm

    sarita @ it's my girls' world - You are awesome. I’m sending SO many prayers your way!

  • January 16, 2017 - 6:29 pm

    Jessica Beer - Yay for round one being done! So proud of you friend and praying for you!

  • January 16, 2017 - 8:28 pm

    Desiree - You’re so damn amazing.
    I cannot wait to throw a massive “KICKED BERTHA’S ASS” party when this is all said and done!

  • January 16, 2017 - 9:09 pm

    Sharon - Thinking about you. Sending love & hugs to you, Mike & the girls see you in Feb, hugs in person. Love from Tony too.

  • January 16, 2017 - 9:44 pm

    Liz - HELL to the YES. You are done with round one and kicking butt and taking names. You are so strong and so amazing and have such a positive outlook on things. In a few short months, Bertha will officially be kicked to the curb! xoxoxo

  • January 16, 2017 - 10:41 pm

    Jean Hamilton - You are so courageous! The Ham Fam is rooting (and praying) for you like crazy!!!!

  • January 16, 2017 - 11:12 pm

    Katie Bliven - Wait. Netflix was blocked? It seems like it should be part of the treatment plan.
    So happy you’re home. It’s funny how disruptions make you crave the routine. XO.

  • January 17, 2017 - 5:03 am

    Paige Haring - So glad round one is done. Thinking of you.

  • January 17, 2017 - 5:34 am

    Joseph Gray - Nicely done Erin! Getting to first base. Not going through this myself, but having a first-born like you go through it, i feel you did vey well despite the allergic reaction. I see life and joy in your pictures of you and the girls instead of fear and “poor me”, which is awesome. Truly. Mom and Dad raised you right, to be a fighter and appreciate the love and kindness heading your way. I will continue praying for your healing directly or indirectly so that you can serve your family and friends with a heart of gratitude and humility that is loved by God. Peace be with you.

  • January 17, 2017 - 6:06 am

    B - One is in the books, yay for surviving, for lots of acts of kindness, for baby girls and backwards overalls. I am sure the girls are thrilled to have their hero home too. Now you know you got this! You are awesome and we (my babies and I) are cheering you on from the east coast (good ole Maryland!).

  • January 17, 2017 - 6:41 am

    Tawnya - Yay!!! One down! Glad you’re dealing with it all well, the part about the IV steroids made me cringe, that restless unfocused feeling is no joke. I get a high dose of steroids after my surgeries and it is awful!! So happy you’re back with your family and hopefully feeling ok ❤

  • January 17, 2017 - 8:15 am

    Heidi - WOW!! What an update. You are amazing. Our thoughts are with you. Hugs and Kisses Heidi and Gordon.

  • January 17, 2017 - 11:09 am

    Crystal - Yay for round one being OVER! You are so strong my friend. I’m happy that you are getting to spend some time with your sweet and precious family! And Meghan is right, no thank you note is needed. I hope you enjoyed all of the goodies!

  • January 17, 2017 - 11:57 am

    Stephanie - I will be cheering you on the whole way! You are so much stronger than I imagine myself being. I hate being a patient but I can promise you I too would be kicking Bertha’s ass.
    Love and hugs!

  • January 17, 2017 - 1:09 pm

    Sarah - You are in my thoughts! Take care of yourself!

  • January 17, 2017 - 3:04 pm

    Heidi - Erin, be expecting a delivery on Thursday. It wouldn’t allow me to say who it was from. Something you enjoy. XOXOXO Heidi

  • January 19, 2017 - 2:09 pm

    Laureen Deveau - The backwards overalls and your killer attitude are my favorite. Yay for one down!! 🙂

  • January 22, 2017 - 10:02 pm

    Whitney - You are a rockstar. Praying for you and your family!!!

so a little birdy told me that keeping track and journaling this “journey” is therapeutic, a good way to keep friends & concerned family involved & is something to look back on when you need reminding that you’re a total and complete bad-ass.

So I shall blog. And inform all you concerned citizens about my progress and mental stability. And hopefully lex keeps it light by continuing to say things like “mommy! You can’t take me to school if you don’t have any hair!”.

I feel totally fine. Minus the (giant) gash in my chest from my mediastinoscopy (aka biopsy that I didn’t realize would result in a scar that rivals my c-section). I went to the gym this week! But I also went to two doctors appointments, got my chemo hair cut, and have my port scheduled to go in tomorrow…

I’m beyond lucky. I mean if you’re going to get stuck with a cancer might as well get a highly treatable kind. Every doctor and nurse I’ve encountered so far has been extrodinary. I mean my doctor barely flinched when I asked if I could be-dazzle my chemo fanny pack (his answer was ultimately no. But I’m sure I can win this be-dazzle fight).

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I start chemo this Monday! I march my butt to the hospital and get 5 whole inpatient days where I hopefully get to sleep in past 5am (we have an alarm clock shaped like a 2 year old that goes off at 5am every morning), and get to eat all the JELLO I want (insert jazz hands emoji).  My chemo regimen is 5 days on and 16 days off (EPOCH + R). Those 5 days are 24 hours a day of chemo- so after this first round I’ll get to do it from the comfort of my own home and continue to make sure the ladies are perfectly dressed (because priorities).

So. 6 rounds of this puts my end date being in April. APRIL. That’s so soon. That’s still spring! I won’t even have to endure this madness for more than two seasons- and that’s reason to celebrate.

since I have b-cell lymphoma AND it’s a giant mass in the middle of my chest (it’s 9cm long! Beastly thing) we decided it needed a good solid name because “cancer” is zero fun. So the nickname Bertha was born along with the hashtag bonvoyagebertha . I’m also totally throwing it a going away rager when this is all over (plus I’ll probably have some medical marijuana to use up. I plan on enjoying ALL the perks of cancer- despite what my dad says).

So that’s what I’ve got right now. a lot of hope- and a lot of not being able to plan (which is hard. . . because i’m SUCH a planner).

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i’m pretending that if my hair is shorter it’ll be lighter and i’ll keep it longer. . . and that it’ll be less of a HORRIFIC thing if shorter strands fall out. . . 


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  • January 5, 2017 - 6:49 pm

    Sara - Sooooo if IIIIIIII bedazzle the fanny pack, you won’t get in trouble? Totally what we’ll be doing then.

  • January 5, 2017 - 7:31 pm

    Gayle - I don’t know how to bedazzle, but I can make rad Jell-O shots! You did say you love Jell-O, right?

  • January 5, 2017 - 8:00 pm

    Teresa - So you get to miss running around in rain and mud. April. Spring fresh new alive. Kick Bertha’s butt

  • January 5, 2017 - 8:17 pm

    karra - you better bedazzle the heck outta that fanny pack girl. + if they really don’t let ya, my mom sent me a New Kids on the Block fanny pack for Christma… you can have that 😉

  • January 5, 2017 - 8:18 pm

    Lisa - Gotta love the honest mouths of kids! You’re amazing and I thank you for being raw and real in sharing your journey with this. Love you girl…I am praying.

  • January 5, 2017 - 8:30 pm

    Samantha Sherlock - So in regards to enjoying all the perks of cancer… I have a friend in San Francisco who was going through chemo and on days when she was feeling great she would whip off her scarf or wig and fan herself with it to get sympathy and a seat on public transit . She said if she has to deal with the crappy side of cancer she better use all the perks while she can!

  • January 5, 2017 - 9:02 pm

    Beth Huff - Bonvoyagebertha! You are amazing for sharing. Sending prayers, strength and love Erin! #luvyourpositivity!

  • January 5, 2017 - 10:09 pm

    Jean - Erin you are such an inspiration…I love your photos, your humor, your new hair cut, and your writing is the best! With a winning attitude like yours and all who love and support you…omg and your girls…you are going to do great!!! Thank you for sharing your journey with all of us. Continous Love and prayers coming your way from the Hamilton/Kirkeby family!

  • January 6, 2017 - 3:23 am

    Erinn - I love your outlook and positivity, you are right April is so soon!!i hope this flies by for you and that the worst aspect is the hair loss. Lots of love for next week that you take the chemo in stride, and are able to enjoy the naps and jello! Love and light coming your way girl!

  • January 6, 2017 - 6:28 am

    Chrissy - Love the new hairdo! So cute on you! Thanks for updating us all on how you are doing. Not only will this be therapeutic for you but will probably help someone going through this later on. Thinking of you!

  • January 6, 2017 - 1:09 pm

    Lynn Richey - You may not remember me but I’ve known of you since you were a little girl. It always seemed time that you and your mom were inseparable and adorable. I am so sorry to hear of your diagnosis and the process you will undertaking! Your positive thoughts will be a strength to you and those who love you. I will read with interest of your journey. Know you are loved by so many….even those you didn’t know cared! Your humor will help you through this. Prayers for you!
    ❤️ Lynn Richey

  • January 6, 2017 - 3:39 pm

    Meghan - Oh yes, you must take advantage of any perk this gives you… especially the marijuana! It’s gonna be one heck of a party when this is all a thing of the past come April!!! I’ll be thinking of you Monday… stay strong, you got this!

  • January 6, 2017 - 8:43 pm

    Laura Keenan - Friend! Firstly, you are gorgeous… that beastly mass has nothing on you. And the haircut is perfection. I love your attitude and your spirit. Can YOU be my spirit animal? So many thoughts & hugs & prayers your way. I promise to be on call for all important texts during those many chemo hours. Love you Erin!

  • January 7, 2017 - 6:06 am

    Ashley B - You don’t know me and I’m not sure I’ve ever posted, but I am a long time reader and stalker, I mean follower on all forms of social media. I didn’t think I could love you and your sweet family from a distance more and then you go and write this post. YOU ROCK. That is all.

  • January 7, 2017 - 7:00 pm

    Joseph Gray - I’m praying for you, Erin. We love yo and have confidence that God has this.
    Peace be with you.

  • January 8, 2017 - 7:23 pm

    Desiree - Friend, you are so strong and amazing, and I know you’re going to kick Bertha’s ass.
    Love, love, love you!!!

  • January 9, 2017 - 12:08 pm

    Tobey Leier - HastalavistaBertha!!… Sending you gigantic hugs, love and prayers… Your positive attitude and strength is awesome and amazing… You are a total Rockstar Erin! I LOVE following you on IG with all the daily adventures with your little cuties and now I will defnitely follow your blog xo… And I totally agree… enjoy any and all medical perks 😉
    Love, Tobey XOXO

  • January 9, 2017 - 8:29 pm

    Joseph Gray - Keep on fighting Erin!

  • January 17, 2017 - 3:50 pm

    Lynn - Kick butt today! You are awesome!

I can’t believe I’m writing this.

You know when your life takes a turn and it’s so far beyond how you pictured 2017 would look like?

Well that’s just about how I’ve been feeling lately. Confused. Swearing a lot. And preparing for the battle of my life (literally!).

A few weeks ago I went into the doctor with some chest pain, a low grade fever, and some night sweats. I was one thousand percent sure the doctor would turn me away with a “cold” (’tis the season!). But instead after a chest CT with contrast while looking for a pulmonary embolism they found a mass.

Spoiler alert. Masses aren’t good.

I’ll spare you all the dirty details- but after a few biopsies (a needle guided biopsy and a mediasteinoscopy) our suspicions are confirmed.

B-cell lymphoma.

The good news! It hasn’t spread past the mass in my chest! It has a really high cure rate!

The bad news? I’m facing aggressive chemo (5 days on- 3 weeks off for six rounds). And we all know I have no hope in hell of keeping my luscious locks.

The best news? I have the biggest and best support system ever. My family & my friends. people have been so absolutely amazing and I’m grateful to have the best and brightest support system around. They’ve been there through all my rounds of emotional ups and downs. They’ve sent cupcakes, the prettiest family photo album, inspiring bracelets, meals, and the most gorgeous flowers (with cursing on the cards). And a poop emoji pillow with a card saying “sorry things are shitty”.

We’ve been slowly talking to the girls through it all. Just telling them simple facts and letting them (lex) ask the questions. When I told her the medicine would make my hair fall out I was greeted with the biggest belly laughs and a “MOMMY! You’ll look like a boy!”. For now we’re trying to keep things are normal as possible before their life is filled with lots and lots more grandma time.

Now. That being said. I have the utmost confidence I WILL beat this. Period. The end. It might be a rough six months. But soon it’ll be in the rear view mirror!

And so while everyone is makeinf their New Years resolutions I already have mine. FIGHT LIKE HELL. Because as moms isn’t that what we do?


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  • December 27, 2016 - 9:44 am

    B - You will beat this … bc you are right that is what moms do … I am so sorry 2017 is going to start as a bust, but it will end with a cancer free mommy! hugs to you and your sweet family.

  • December 27, 2016 - 10:14 am

    Tosha - I have followed your blog for such a long time now that I feel like I know you. 🙂 My heart breaks for you that you have to go through such an ordeal but you’re right; you will beat this. Here’s a huge middle finger to cancer! Hugs!!

  • December 27, 2016 - 10:23 am

    Sara - I love you.
    That is all.

  • December 27, 2016 - 10:45 am

    Lacey Bean - F you cancer is right! You got this girl! It’s great you have such an amazing support system and the blogging support system is here for you too! <3

  • December 27, 2016 - 10:55 am

    Meghan - I am beyond sorry that you have to start the year worrying about something as shitty as cancer. But I have faith in you that you will beat this! And I have a feeling you will rock a bald head if it comes to that! We are all here for you!

  • December 27, 2016 - 11:03 am

    Heidi Hunter - What a way to start 2017 but YES you WILL/CAN fight this. Are hearts are with you and are ALWAYS here for you.

  • December 27, 2016 - 11:16 am

    Colleen Sullivan - You’re AMAZING and amazingly strong and brave Erin. I adore you and I believe in you — you’re going to show that mass who’s BOSS. xoxxo

  • December 27, 2016 - 11:19 am

    Cathy Naidoo - Love you Erin.

  • December 27, 2016 - 11:25 am

    Colleen - Thinking of you!

  • December 27, 2016 - 11:49 am

    Laura - Love you so much Erin! You will beat this and due to a shitty 2017 it will give you many more not so shitty years. Silver lining right?! xoxo

  • December 27, 2016 - 12:12 pm

    Stef and Brett - You all are in our thoughts, prayers and we’re sending you all of our positive energy. You are an inspiration and know you will fight this battle with all you have and win! xxoo

  • December 27, 2016 - 12:24 pm

    Courtney Spena - Love you so, Erin! You were there for me during my worst, I hope I can do the same for you and your family. Though I’m kind of bummed someone already nabbed the poop emoji pillow :p that was perfect!

  • December 27, 2016 - 12:35 pm

    Chrissy - I will thinking of you and sending prayers and positive vibes your way!

  • December 27, 2016 - 1:14 pm

    alyica - ERIN! I am so sorry you are going through this, but you are a strong woman, and I know you will kick this is in the ass. Lots of positive vibes being sent your way.

  • December 27, 2016 - 1:37 pm

    Laura - Well, Shit. I think this is my first comment (and sorry not a more fun one!) on your blog, but just wanted to take a minute to say that I think you are awesome, and have no doubt you will show cancer who is boss b!%*$. I am so sorry that you are having to go through this, but SO glad you caught it soon. Sending prayers and positive vibes from Atlanta! Cancer can suck it.

  • December 27, 2016 - 1:39 pm

    Ericka - Sending all the love and prayers your way! You are tough and you will get through this!

  • December 27, 2016 - 6:04 pm

    SJL - Sending prayers to you and your family.

  • December 27, 2016 - 6:40 pm

    Liz - You fight like hell and we will all be praying for you and thinking of you!

  • December 27, 2016 - 6:48 pm

    Heather Hughes - Hey mama! I have read your blog for a while and wanted to post to you. I am so sorry to hear this and know you can beat this. October 2015 I was diagnosed with T Cell ALL (Leukemia) with a 16 month and 4 month old. I did 32 days in the hospital for chemo and then continued for a year of 4-5 days a week with IV chemo and I am still doing chemo once a month and take chemo pills daily (for maintenance therapy – I am on a pediatric intensive protocol because I am only in my 20’s). BUT, I am in remission. So I know you can fight like hell and beat this. You and your family are in my prayers and I know you can do this. Stay positive and have faith in God. If you need someone to talk to please reach out to me! <3

  • December 28, 2016 - 3:30 am

    Jessica - You’ve got this sweet momma!! I know you will fight and kick cancers ass! Lex’s reaction about your hair is pretty cute. I’ll be sending you positive thoughts from afar.

  • December 28, 2016 - 7:39 am

    Liz - YOU GOT THIS GIRLFRIEND!!!! You are going to kick cancer’s a$$ and take names. I KNOW you will. And six months? Six months is NOTHING when you think of the hundreds and hundreds and HUNDREDS of months you get to spend with those sweet girls and that amazing husband of yours.
    Oh and sweet, sweet Lex. You know she will always be there to put a smile on your face, just when you need it the most.
    Love you so much!

  • December 28, 2016 - 9:12 am

    eliana - Hi Erin, been a long time reader and I love your blog & sense of humor. It breaks my heart to know others are going through this, as my family has been hit with cancer this year too. Not gonna lie, it’s a hard process, a roller coaster of emotional ups & downs, but you have such a good attitude and let me tell you that makes a HUGE difference. It will not only help YOU fight, but it will also help your family. It is so hard to see a loved one go through this, in my case it’s my mother, but seeing her be positive and cheerful through it helps me keep my emotions in check too. Thank you for sharing your story, sending you lots of love. You got this!

  • December 28, 2016 - 1:21 pm

    Jordan - You are a badass rockstar and this C-word has got NOTHIN on you!!! You just watch, 2017 is totally going to surprise you when you kick this B & celebrate the crap out of life.

  • December 28, 2016 - 2:52 pm

    Laureen Deveau - Oh, Erin. I haven’t been able to get you off my mind. I can’t imagine what you’re going through. You’ve made the most perfect resolution, and you’ve got two of the cutest reasons to do so. I wish I could do something to help you fight, but for now sending prayers your way is what I’ll do. Add another one to your corner, sending love and support to you!!

  • December 29, 2016 - 11:28 am

    Crystal - You’ve got this pretty lady! You’re going to kick cancer’s ass and I have no doubts about it. Praying you through this!

  • December 29, 2016 - 11:59 am

    Carolee - I’ve read your blog for a while & never expected to find a post like this. Cancer sucks & I’m so sorry you have to experience it first hand. Much love being sent from Indy!

  • January 1, 2017 - 6:45 pm

    2017 – Live with Deliberate Intention » my journey of doing - […] say more about 2016 later, but it ended on a low note for me.  One of my best friends was diagnosed with lymphoma and will start treatment early this year.  I’ve spent weeks pondering how I could best help […]

  • January 1, 2017 - 7:28 pm

    Caz Wilson - I’m so sorry you are going through this and thank you for sharing. I’ve followed your blog for years and feel like we’re friends. You will beat this, sending love and positive healing your way during this difficult time.

  • January 4, 2017 - 3:37 pm

    Desiree - I love you friend, and I’m so incredibly sorry you are going through this. That said, you are the toughest, most bad-a lady I know (and I mean that in the absolute best way possible), and I know you are going to kick this cancer’s butt. You know where to find me, I’m here to help at any time, in any way. xo

  • January 28, 2017 - 8:37 pm

    Donna Parfitt - Wow Erin. I think of you as still a teenager so how can this be?! Prayers go out to you and your little family. I know you will beat this. My mom had the same diagnosis at age 78 and totally recovered, so you will too.

  • February 9, 2017 - 1:17 pm

    Lauren - I am so so sorry that I am so behind on my blog reading that I just found out about this! I feel trrrkble! You will beat this! Warrior woman!